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Ironton holds off Panthers

Ironton Fighting Tigers’ Ryan Payne (24) grabbed an offensive rebound and then escapes three Chesapeake Panthers’ players. Ironton beat the Panthers, 54-45. (Photo Courtesy of Tim Gearhart)

Jim Walker
jim.walker@irontontribune.com

This time, Murphy’s Law faced a filibuster.
Murphy’s Law says that anything that can go wrong, will go wrong. The Ironton Fighting Tigers thought the law was being enacted in the fourth quarter, but they decided to refute the mythical law.
Ironton overcame foul trouble and some missed easy shots to hold off the Chesapeake Panthers 54-45 in an Ohio Valley Conference game on Friday.
“We got in a little foul trouble, I thought our guys stepped up and handled it. A lot of things were going wrong — Reid (Carrico) and Ethan (Wilson) got in foul trouble and we let (Cole Mills) have some 3s,” said Ironton coach Mark LaFon.
“With all those things going on we were still being aggressive. We missed a lot of shots early and we kept going to the basket.”
Ironton (5-12, 3-7) was led by Wilson with 23 points, five steals and four assists.
Carrico had 10 points despite sitting out half the game while Trent Milleson had 10 points and seven rebounds off the bench.
Kyle Adkins grabbed eight rebounds as Ironton held a 37-22 advantage on the boards including 20-7 on the offensive glass.
“We missed a lot of shots early and we kept going to the basket,” said LaFon. “Ethan’s a battler. He’s a warrior. He goes hard all the time,” said LaFon.
“We told Kyle if he rebounds, the rest of your game gets going. Man, he tore it up. Milleson did a good job. I could go on and on about everyone. It was just a good team effort.”
Cole Mills led Chesapeake (5-12, 3-7) with 14 points and Austin Jackson scored 12. Tylan Hutchison had four rebounds.
The Panthers shot just 16-of-41 from the field and 9-of-17 at the foul line.
Mills hit a 3-pointer to start the game and a layup by Eli Archer had the Panthers up 5-2.
Wilson then hit a 3-pointer to tie the game and Carrico hit a 14-footer to give Ironton its first lead.
A 13-footer by Carrico and a layup by Wilson put Ironton ahead 11-7 at the 2:53 mark, but Austin Jackson hit two straight layups and the game was tied at 11.
Mills made another 3-pointer to put Chesapeake up 15-13 before two foul shots by Wilson tied the game.
Jackson scored three points to start the second quarter and make it 18-15.
Adkins made a layup and Wilson sank a foul shot and then stole the ball and converted a three-point play. A layup by Ryan Payne off a pass from Wilson made it 23-18 and Wilson’s trifecta at the 2:41 mark gave Ironton a 26-18 lead.
A layup by Christian Layne just before the buzzer got Chesapeake within 26-20 at the break.
Mills hit a 3-pointer to get the Panthers within 30-25, but Milleson had a putback and baseline jumper to make it 34-25. Adkins’ layup gave Ironton a 37-27 lead.
Eli Archer had a layup but a tip-in by Milleson at the buzzer left Ironton up 39-29.
The Fighting Tigers had their biggest lead at 45-34 after a layup by Milleson, but Tylan Hutchison converted a three-point play and Archer scored to cut the spread to 45-41.
Wilson’s foul shot had the lead at 48-43 but Hutchison drove for a layup and it was 48-45.
But Wilson converted a one-and-one with 1:13 left and fed Joel Blankenship for a layup that put the lead at 52-45 and sealed the win.
On Tuesday, Ironton visits South Point and Chesapeake goes to Coal Grove.
Chesapeake    15    5    9    16    =    45
Ironton       15    11    13    15    =    54
CHESAPEAKE (5-12, 3-7): Tylan Hutchison 2 0 1-3 5, Cole Mills 1 4 0-0 14, Austin Jackson 4 0 4-8 12, Eli Archer 3 0 1-2 7, Kamren Harless 0 0 3-4 3, Logan Walsh 0 0 0-0 0, Trent Dearth 1 0 0-0 2, Christian Layne 1 0 0-0 2. Totals: 16-41 9-17 45. 3-pt goals: 4-13. Rebounds: 7-O, 15-D = 22 (Hutchison 4). Teams rebounds: 6. Assists: 4. Steals: 8 (Jackson 2, Walsh 2). Turnovers: 14. Fouls: 16. Fouled out: None.
IRONTON (5-12, 3-7): Ethan Wilson 4 2 9-11 23, Joel Blankenship 1 0 0-0 2, Kyle Adkins 3 0 1-2 7, Ayden Barnes 0 0 0-0 0, Reid Carrico 4 0 2-4 10, Trent Milleson 5 0 0-1 10, Hunter Humphreys 0 0 0-2 0, Ryan Payne 1 0 0-0 2, Collin Freeman 0 0 0-0 0. Totals: 20-51 12-20 54. 3-pt goals: 2-8. Rebounds: 20-O, 17-D = 37 (Adkins 8, Milleson 7, Wilson 7). Team rebounds: 4. Assists: 7 (Wilson 3). Steals: 12 (Wilson 5, Adkins 2). Turnovers: 14. Fouls: 11. Fouled out: None.